"Picture it," Pravdin cries, folding himself into a comic crouch. "After four hours on line the guard asks me, 'What are you waiting for, comrade?' So what do I tell him? So what I tell him is: 'For the State to wither away is what I'm waiting for.'"
The cigarette holder balanced delicately between the fingers of one hand, the stem of a crystal wine glass pressed between the fingers of the other, Mother Russia shakes with laughter.
"Don't go away, there's more," Pravdin gasps. "When I say I'm waiting for the state to wither away, this old bat in front of me waves her gouty finger in my face and tells" - Pravdin can barely get the words out he is laughing so hard - 'she tells me, 'Don't hold your breath!'"
- From Mother Russia by Robert Littell